Analytics and data are playing a bigger role in shaping the marketing strategy of today’s businesses. No matter what industry you operate in or what size your business is, data should be impacting how you operate.
Understanding data comes back to everything we do as marketers. This ranges from fine-tuning your campaigns based on specific metrics such as click-through and engagement rates, to analysing more holistic data in order to gain a better understanding of your customers and unique buying cycle. Data and analytics can also help your business determine the channels that are most effective in generating ROI. As 39% of marketers say proving the ROI of their marketing activities is their top marketing challenge, understanding data should be their priority.
This article gives an understanding of data and how to implement it to improve your marketing campaigns.
What Exactly is Marketing Data?
Your marketing analytics data comprises all the information you collect from your marketing efforts. This means your website data, paid advertising statistics, social media statistics, SEO data, email marketing lists, downloads and more.
The key thing to remember when it comes to your data is that you should not consider it in isolation. Your marketing campaigns work together with each other to move prospects through the buying funnel, and data is what ties all of your efforts together so that you can identify what role each channel plays in the conversion process.
Today’s sales and marketing landscape is extremely different than it was a couple of decades ago. The introduction of the Internet, blogging, social media, and other digital communications channels has meant that the path to purchase is not a simple, straight line. It is a complex journey with various touch points across a number of channels. In fact, it now takes 6 to 8 touches to generate a viable sales lead.
With the modern consumer journey becoming more and more complex, it’s more important than ever to know where your consumers are coming from, what is generating leads and what information is resonating with them. This all comes from data.
Marketing Data Your Business Should be Using
Your customers are at the heart of everything you do as a digital marketer. If you don’t understand your customers, you can’t sell products and services to them. In order to define your customer, it can be useful to create a buyer persona. Your Buyer Persona defines your target customer, detailing who your ideal customers is, what they are like, their motivations, the challenges they face and how they make decisions.
There are three key questions that you can use your data to answer in order to help you define your buyer personas.
- What types of customers do you attract?
- How do your customers find you?
- How do your customers interact with your business online and through emails?
It’s important to remember that as your business changes and develops, so do your customers. So, once you have identified your persona, don’t forget about it. Continuously researching your customers to try to gain a deeper insight and understand them more is key. As such, it’s important to keep looking at your data and analysing it to update your personas over time in order to make more effective strategic decisions you can make.
Identifying your Buyer Persona is the foundation for your marketing campaign. Once you understand them, you can then start to look at how they move through your marketing funnel.
The Buyer Journey
Marketing data can help you analyse how prospects are travelling through the marketing funnel. This is known as their Buyer Journey, and it is different for every business, although customers will typically travel through the following 4 key stages:
Analysing marketing data can help businesses track the steps that a customer goes through with their company; from the moment they become aware of the business to when they transact. Data can allow marketers to see the customer journey and work out how a prospect became a sale or a lead, by tracking their behaviours and previous interactions with the business. This helps marketers identify what is working and what needs improvement in their marketing campaigns. It can also help marketers identify points in the buyer journey where prospects are dropping off and alter their strategy accordingly to move them further through the process to sale.
Once you’ve identified the Buyer Journey, it’s important to work out how each marketing campaign and channel is working for your business at the different stages.
Channels & Campaigns
Every campaign you run online will have its own set of analytics to monitor performance. This data can help marketers to identify which platforms are generating the best ROI. Put simply, it lets you see what is and isn’t working from your strategy and where to put more of your marketing efforts.
The following are some of the channels you should be measuring to gather data on your digital marketing efforts.
- Your Company Website
Installing Google Analytics to your website gives you access to a huge amount of data about how visitors get to your website and how they interact with it. Google Analytics offers a huge amount of information that your business can use to drive marketing decisions, such as the demographics of your users, most visited pages, how users navigate your site, how users are converting and many more. This can inform how you should optimise your website so that it performs to its full potential. In addition, as we discussed above, today’s buyer journey is complex, with visitors interacting with your business through a range of platforms and pieces of content. With Google Analytics, you can find out which campaigns are most effective at driving valuable traffic to your site.
- Email Marketing
If you’re sending out regular email communications to your clients, you’re most likely using an email platform like Campaign Monitor or MailChimp. These platforms all provide analytics on your email open rates, what links were clicked and any unsubscribes.
Every time you send an email you should be looking at these statistics so that over time you are able to identify trends in popular content, effective times to send emails and subject lines that work. Monitoring your data internally is great for giving your business an internal benchmark. It can also be useful to do some external research and see how your email stats compare to competitors in your industry.
- Social Media
Every social media platform that you advertise on will offer an analytics dashboard that provides the key metrics. You can also consider a third-party analytics software if you want more in-depth information, however, we’d recommend starting with the free native analytics options for that platform first. If you can’t find what you’re looking for, consider moving to a paid solution. Some of the metrics you should be tracking to measure the effectiveness of your social media campaigns are Audience Growth Rate, Average Engagement Rate, Visitor Frequency Rate and Social Conversion Rate.
- Blog Content
Your blog content helps connect your business to your audience and can be a great way to generate leads. Google Analytics can help you track the success of your blogs to find out how long people stayed on the blog, what channel they came from and if they looked at any other pages on your site. Analytics can also come in handy if you have a downloadable resource or form sign-up on your blog to measure how many blog readers are converting. This data can then be applied to inform your future blog and wider content strategy.
Use Data to Optimise Your Campaigns
The most successful campaigns today are data-driven marketing campaigns. This means campaigns that are optimised through continuously collecting, monitoring and acting on data. As your campaigns run, you should be analysing them based on pre-defined metrics in order to track your progress and identify whether your campaigns are effective or not.
It is also important to look at how often your audience has converted, which means they have completed an action that you want them to. With these insights, you can ensure your campaign is most efficient in generating ROI by focusing your budgets on the things that are working well.
Analytics insights are also excellent for refining your target audience. Collecting and analysing data insights on your audience can help to expand your reach across channels. With a comprehensive list of your audience and their characteristics, you can also build new audiences that are similar to your current audiences so that you can expand your reach. This is known as ‘Similar Audiences’ in Google Ads and can be used across both the search and display networks. Audiences can also be applied across social media platforms for optimum targeting.
The Future of Data
Technology is continuously increasing and innovating and more and more information is becoming available to business owners. As such, data analysis is likely to continue to play a significant role in marketing campaigns and overall business decisions. With the right data, you can start altering your strategy and successfully moving your company forward.
If you need help with your digital marketing, get in touch with the team at Digital Squad, a leading digital marketing agency Melbourne. We can analyse data from your current campaigns and take make suggestions on how to improve them.
We aren’t your typical digital marketing agency. We make sure our clients’ digital strategy is fully looked after. Leveraging the power of all other digital avenues is key. With proven results, talk to us how we can help you with YouTube advertising, Instagram marketing or any other social media marketing Melbourne. Additionally, we’re here to show you scalable growth with programmatic advertising Melbourne, Bing ads Melbourne and marketing automation.